Tuesday, April 24, 2012

self-delusion

I've been living a lie. Not a big one, and maybe lie isn't the right word.  Delusion.  Yes, delusion.  A self-delusion at that.

Ever since the constant threat of nuclear annihilation and northern migrating killer bees of the 80s, I haven't been much for the consumption of news.  "Would we all get nuked into dust before I got a boyfriend?"  "Will I know a killer bee when I see one?" Just insert any neurotic, obsessive thought a teenager might have about current events, and you've got it.  As years passed, I'd make sure that I knew what was going on in the world.  I'd tune in to your odd local news show or 60 Minutes on occasion.  But basically, I didn't watch the news, couldn't watch the news, because I'd lose sleep over every story.

Cut to the Information Age and me, carefully selecting news from the internet.  I curate me-approved news with a click. A terrible story about genocide? Get the salient facts and then soothe myself with a story about a puppy who's been adopted by a mallard.  Ah...that's the stuff. I'll sleep like a baby tonight.

But these days, I'm getting a little lazy.  You could even say, haphazard with my news gathering.  Today, I clicked on the following links, in reverse order, without really considering their possible content:
  • Mad cow disease found in California dairy cow
  • 40 white rabbits dumped at Huntington Beach park
  • Big Guy, a blind sea lion, finds a home at last
  • Woman bites driver who stole parking spot, police say
I'm not sure what to feel after all that. What do I lie awake tonight worrying about? You see, thinking I had control was the delusion. I will compulsively click on any story with a remotely interesting headline.  Blind seal lion?  Come on!  Poor kid. And he's overweight? Abandoned rabbits, sick cows, not to mention, milk with cereal in the morning has a question mark around it now. 

What a dilemma.  They still publish the funnies, right? 

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